REVIEWS AND QUOTES
"Having lived through the 50's and then the turbulent 60's, I couldn't help but be enthralled by this book. But, whether
you are young or as old as I am, you'll be like me and not be able to put the book down. I "devoured" this piece of fruit.
Paul DiCorcia, Point Pleasant, NJ
"Fruit of the Bad Seed is a combination love story and chronicle of a teacher's amazement at the sexual mores of his peers
and students. It is certainly not your usual educational puff piece. It holds your interest with good writing and surprising
details of secondary education. I enjoyed it."
Export - North Carolina
"Mr. Cera's unique style of writing comes through as I was engrossed in the story of Ron Caruso and his teaching years at
Nessaponic High. I also was a teenager in the late 60's and laughed as I remembered those wonderful years. But I also
could sympathize with Ron's temptations, as we teenagers discovered the sexual freedom of the 60's..... I loved this
novel, and the love story of a teacher torn between his career and the love of a beautiful girl, wise beyond her years. And
in answer to the question: Is man redeemable? The answer is yes, in this story, by the love of a beautiful young girl and
for a man who needed to redeem himself... Thank you Mr Cera. Loved this book."
Christina M. Stefurak - Victoria, Australia
At no time during the history of modern education in America was there more
turmoil than in the decade of the 1960s. And no teacher found the tumult more
challenging than Ronald Caruso.
In the 1960s the offspring of the baby boomers burgeoned school populations
beyond capacities and districts struggled to fill teacher vacancies resulting in an
influx of newly graduated, naive educators. The new teachers were book trained,
but many were no more psychologically advanced than the students they came to
teach and Nessaponic High School had her share.
Entering the 1960s after growing up in the ‘50s, Caruso found himself embroiled
in the seductive allure of the sexual revolution. The ethics of the new age were so
drastically contrasted to the domestic mother image of his upbringing, that Caruso
felt he had been in a cultural cocoon for his entire college years. Though he
ultimately found himself indulging in the liberties of the time more as a result of
accident than design, it did not matter. To any observer over forty years
removed, Caruso is seen as a bad seed. Though his efforts to redeem himself
were constantly sabotaged by the social attitudes of his colleagues and charges, a
product of the new generation promises to reclaim his values.
Fruit of the Bad Seed is Ron Caruso’s story about the professional and the not so
professional administrators for whom he worked. It will tell about some of the
teachers he taught with and will relate what he knew of the secretaries and
custodians who were employed at the same time as he. But his story will tell
even more about another group most responsible for the greater substance of
Ronald Caruso’s tale, the permissive coeds of Nessaponic High.
When Caruso started teaching he had no idea that the whims of fate would alter
his career. It never dawned on him that he would be at the mercy of a changing
world where he would become a victim of its caprice. He did not realize that his
morality would change, his ethics would change and eventually, his very nature
would undergo a major transformation.